Quiz for Postpartum Depression
Postpartum depression has no one particular cause and no one unique set of symptoms. It develops in different women differently and therefore can be difficult to identify when it comes to seeking early intervention treatment.
Despite the individual nature of postpartum depression, there are some specific and important risk factors to be aware of when assessing your own potential of developing PPD.
Because awareness regarding postpartum depression and the risk factors associated with it are still relatively unknown among women and their families, it is important to be aware of your own individual risk for developing postpartum depression.
Whether you are thinking of becoming pregnant, are currently pregnant or have recently given birth, there are ways to help predict whether or not you are at risk of developing postpartum depression.
Postpartum depression, and its many forms, is a serious condition and so it is important to recognize signs, symptoms and risk factors as soon as possible.
Below is a helpful postpartum depression quiz you can take to tell if you may be at risk for developing postpartum depression. Answer “yes” or “no” to all of the following questions that are applicable to you:
Personal Mental Health History
The following are questions about your own history of mental health experiences that can help identify a possible risk factor of developing postpartum depression.
- Do you presently have or have you had a history of mental illness such as bipolar disorder, psychosis or any other clinically diagnosed mental illness?
- Have you ever experienced a past trauma such as sexual violence, rape, assault, car accident or other traumatic incident?
- Have you ever been diagnosed and treated for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?
- Have you ever been treated for anxiety and/or depression?
- Have you ever suffered from anxiety and/or depression that went undiagnosed and untreated?
Family Mental Health History
Genetics and family history play a certain role in the risk for developing postpartum depression. The following questions will help you to assess your own potential risk for developing postpartum depression by looking at your family mental health history.
- Has anyone in your family ever been clinically diagnosed with a mental illness such as bipolar disorder, psychosis, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) or any other form of mental illness?
- Has anyone in your family ever experienced a physical or emotional trauma such as sexual violence, rape, assault, car accident or any other traumatic incident?
- Has anyone in your family ever been diagnosed and treated for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?
- Has anyone in your family ever received treatment for depression and/or anxiety?
- Has anyone in your family ever struggled with depression or anxiety that went undiagnosed and untreated?
- Have any women in your family suffered from postpartum depression whether diagnosed or undiagnosed?
Personal Pregnancy History
Research has shown that women with a history of stressful pregnancies, childbirths or postpartum depression will be at a greater risk of developing PPD.
The following are questions that will assess your risk for developing postpartum depression based on your past history of pregnancy. These questions may not be applicable to everyone.
- Have you ever experienced a traumatic childbirth before that may have involved an unplanned C-section, the use of forceps, or the infant being placed in the NICU?
- Have you previously had a miscarriage, stillbirth or other complicated pregnancies?
- Have you ever had symptoms of postpartum depression with a previous pregnancy?
Current Life Stressors
Health experts feel that women who are facing a number of difficult or challenging life situations are at greater risk of developing postpartum depression.
If you are currently pregnant, the following questions will help to assess your potential risk of developing postpartum depression.
- Was your pregnancy unplanned or unwanted?
- Are you unmarried?
- Are you currently without family or social supports?
- Are you currently facing financial hardship?
- Have you experienced a loss in the past year such as a job loss, divorce, death of a friend or family member, bankruptcy or other challenging life event?
Current Postpartum Experience
If you have recently given birth, there are risk factors that could potentially lead to developing postpartum depression symptoms over the next several months.
Please answer the following questions about your current postpartum experience to determine if you have or are at risk of developing postpartum depression:
- Did you experience any prenatal anxiety or depression for which you received treatment?
- Are you currently facing relationship or marriage problems?
- Are you currently struggling with caring for your newborn such as an infant’s fussy temperament, difficulty consoling your child, or your infant facing health challenges?
- Are you having difficulty breastfeeding?
- Are you sleep deprived and fatigued?
- Are you experiencing weight loss and loss of appetite?
- Are you regularly exhibiting any of the following symptoms?
- Sadness and crying
- Anxiety and worry
- Irritability and frustration
- Fear of harming your baby
- Strong feelings of guilt and shame
Review more common postpartum depression symptoms.
Assessing Your Risk of Postpartum Depression
All of the above questions ask about known risk factors for postpartum depression. If you have answered “yes” to any of the above questions, you could be at risk of developing postpartum depression. Your answers to these quiz questions should not be considered a clinical diagnosis but rather a starting point for bringing awareness to your personal risk of developing postpartum depression.
Based on the results of this quiz, you may notice that you are at risk for developing postpartum depression. It is important to discuss your risk factors and your family and medical history with your doctor. Healthy family planning also includes discussing potential risks of postpartum depression with your loved ones and your spouse.
By being aware of the possible risk of postpartum depression, you and your health care providers can address these possibilities ahead of time in order to provide preventative treatment before and after pregnancy.